This Week in the ECACHL: March 10, 2005

One round and four teams down, the ECACHL postseason moves onto the quarterfinals, where last weekend’s winners travel to the top four seeds in the playoffs. Those four squads each had last weekend off and await this weekend’s action with much anticipation and energy.

As do we.

(Note: The recent playoff history category only includes games since the ECAC split.)

No. 9 Clarkson (13-21-3, 7-13-2 ECACHL) at No. 1 Cornell (22-4-3, 18-2-2)

This Season
Cornell swept the season series, winning 4-2 at home (1/28/05) and 3-0 in Potsdam (2/26/05).

Recent Playoff History
2004 Quarterfinals at Cornell: Knights won series 1-5, 5-4, 5-1
2000 Preliminary in Lake Placid: Big Red won 4-2
1997 Championship in Lake Placid: Big Red won 2-1
1996 Semifinals in Lake Placid: Big Red won 3-0
1995 Quarterfinals at Clarkson: Knights won 6-2, 7-2
1992 Semifinals in Boston: Big Red won 4-3 (2ot)
1989 Quarterfinals at Clarkson: Big Red won 5-3, 0-0 (ot)
1988 Quarterfinals at Cornell: Knights won 4-3, 2-4, 1-0 (mini-game)
1986 Championship in Boston: Big Red won 3-2 (ot)
1985 Consolation in Boston: Big Red won 5-3

Top Five Scorers

Jay Latulippe, Sr., W, 37 GP, 15-20-35, 10 PPG
Chris Blight, Sr., W, 35 GP, 6-18-24
Steve Zalewski, Fr., C, 37 GP, 12-7-19, 4 PPG
Mac Faulkner, Sr., W, 37 GP, 11-8-19, 5 PPG, 2 SHG
Mike Sullivan, So., C, 35 GP, 8-9-17, 4 PPG

Matt Moulson, Jr., F, 28 GP, 20-13-33, 11 PPG, 4 GWG
Mike Knoepfli, Sr., F, 29 GP, 11-12-23, 5 PPG, 3 GWG
Shane Hynes, Jr., F, 27 GP, 5-18-23
Daniel Pegoraro, Jr., F, 29 GP, 7-12-19, 4 PPG, 3 GWG
Charlie Cook, Sr., D, 29 GP, 7-11-18, 4 PPG, 2 GWG

Between the Pipes

Dustin Traylen, Jr., 28 GP, 9-14-2, 2.74 GAA, .908 save percentage

David McKee, So., 29 GP, 22-4-3, 1.27, .943

An Inside Look

A season ago, Cornell defeated St. Lawrence and Clarkson to end the regular season. The Big Red earned a bye for its efforts in 2003-04, which allowed Cornell to sit out the first round before hosting the Golden Knights in the ECAC quarterfinals.

The Knights entered last year’s postseason as the No. 9 seed after their regular season finale versus Cornell. They traveled to Union to open the playoffs, winning there and advancing to Ithaca.

Sound familiar?

This weekend pits the ECACHL regular-season champion Big Red, coming off a bye week, against the Golden Knights, who advanced to the quarterfinals after a grueling three-game series in which each contest was settled in overtime — a first for the ECACHL in postseason play.

“I thought we got better as the weekend progressed,” said Clarkson head coach George Roll. “Union played hard all weekend and really pushed our guys to match their intensity.”

The Knights opened the first round with a 1-0 victory when rookie David Cayer notched his first goal since January 29 at 15:43 of the first extra session. The next evening, Clarkson lost a third-period lead and, eventually, the game midway through the first overtime. In Game 3, the Knights clinched the series late in the opening overtime session on freshman Shawn Weller’s first goal since he tallied twice in his collegiate debut.

“Weller was such a force for all three games,” explained Roll.

The Knights received a balanced effort, rolling four lines all weekend and getting sound defensive efforts, including solid play in goal from junior Dustin Traylen.

Six different players scored goals for Clarkson, including a pair of rookies and three defensemen — Michael Grenzy, Max Kolu and Chris Brekelmans. In addition, Roll pointed to the strong play of freshman Steve Zalewski and sophomore Michael Grenzy, while rookie Nick Dodge took every important faceoff.

“There was a lot of ebb and flow,” said Roll of the series. “It gave us an opportunity to play in do-or-die games with the season on the line.”

Which is exactly what the Knights had to do a year ago when Clarkson bounced back from a 5-1 opening night loss to Cornell to win the final two games in the series in Lynah Rink — one of the toughest, if not the toughest, rink for opposing squads.

But will that performance have any bearing on the Knights’ attempt at repeating history?

“It does give you some confidence,” Roll said. “But that was last year. This is a different team.”

Cornell head coach Mike Schafer agrees.

“That’s the first question I’m asked by the media,” explained the bench boss on Wednesday. “That’s more of a media thing. We used [last year] as motivation to play a lot better all season.

“We’re a different team … They are a different team too.”

The Big Red comes into this series in a different state altogether from a year ago. For starters, last season was an anomaly for Cornell at home, ending the campaign with a mere 7-7-5 in Ithaca. They also allowed 41 goals in 19 games at Lynah. That’s an impressive mark for some teams, but not this typically stingy club.

Check out this season’s numbers.

Cornell is once again undefeated in Ithaca at 13-0-1 and has allowed a microscopic 16 goals (1.14 per game) in those contests.

“What makes me happy as a coach,” said Schafer, “is that I think a lot of guys are playing really, really solid. Because of that, I don’t think there’s any weakness in the sense of one weak line or one week defensive pairing or one week power play unit. Our balance is solid.”

To say the least.

The Big Red leads the nation in team defense (1.31 goals per game), scoring margin (+1.93 goals per game), power play proficiency (24.8 percent), penalty killing (88.5 percent) and winning percentage (.810). If the season ended today, the 1.31 goals per game average would rank first in the NCAA in the post-Depression Era and fourth all-time.

Individually, junior Matt Moulson is in the top 15 in the country in goals (20) and tied for eighth with 11 power play goals.

Then there’s sophomore David McKee, a Hobey Baker candidate.

The Texas native leads the nation in GAA (1.27), wins (22 — tied) and shutouts (eight). He is one short of the single-season Cornell shutout mark held by David LeNeveu and is tied with Ken Dryden for the school’s career record. Five of his blankings this season have come since January 29 and he was 7-0-1 with a 0.86 GAA in February.

Yeah, this kid’s pretty good.

“We need to go in there and be a patient team,” Roll said about how his team can offset such a challenge. “We’ll need to clamp down defensively and when we get the chance to score, we need to capitalize.”

Even with lopsided numbers in its favor, Cornell isn’t taking its opponent lightly.

“We’ll be facing a team with passion and heart,” said Schafer. “They went on the road against a tough Union club to beat. We know we’re going to play a battle-tested team.”

Prediction: Cornell in two games.

No. 7 St. Lawrence (17-17-2, 9-12-1) at No. 2 Harvard (18-8-3, 15-5-2)

This Season
Teams split the season series. SLU won 4-2 in Canton (11/26/04), Harvard won 5-2 at home (2/19/05).

Recent Playoff History
1997 First Round at Harvard: Crimson won 4-2
1996 Quarterfinals at SLU: Crimson won 5-2, 2-3, 8-4
1987 Championship in Boston: Crimson won 6-3

Top Five Scorers

T.J. Trevelyan, Jr., W, 36 GP, 25-19-44, 8 PPG
John Zeiler, Jr., F, 36 GP, 9-23-32, 5 PPG
Stace Page, Sr., W, 36 GP, 12-15-27, 4 PPG
Max Taylor, So., F, 35 GP, 10-15-25
Mike Madill, Jr., D, 36 GP, 6-15-21

Tom Cavanagh, Sr., C, 29 GP, 9-16-25, 3 GWG
Jon Pelle, Fr., F, 29 GP, 7-14-21, 4 PPG
Andrew Lederman, Sr., C, 24 GP, 6-13-19, 4 PPG
Ryan Maki, So., W, 25 GP, 9-8-17, 3 PPG
Kevin Du, So., C, 26 GP, 7-10-17, 3 GWG

Between the Pipes

Mike McKenna, Sr., 33 GP, 15-15-2, 2.74, .909

Dov Grumet-Morris, Sr., 26 GP, 16-7-3, 1.58, .948

An Inside Look

After a week off, Harvard, the defending ECAC tournament champ, begins its title defense with a series at the Bright Hockey Center — where the Crimson is 12-1-0. Its opponent, St. Lawrence, is coming off a two-game sweep of Princeton in Canton by scores of 7-0 and 4-2.

“We played with a lot of energy,” said SLU coach and New England native Joe Marsh about his team’s win over the Tigers.

“On Friday, I have to be honest. It was one of those games that everything went our way. We capitalized early on our chances and had all the energy going. [Was] it a 7-0 game? Probably not when you review the tape.

“They are a deceptive team. They work hard, open things up and generate chances. They never quit and did a real good job in the transition [on Saturday]. It was a dog fight. We didn’t want to play game three because anything can happen.”

The Saints got their wish by scoring three times in the third period of Game 2, including senior defenseman Matt Macdonald’s series-clincher with less than two minutes left in what was the final home game of his collegiate career.

“The big thing for us,” said Marsh, “was that we had a good team effort. Anytime we get seven goals in a game and [leading scorer T.J.] Trevelyan doesn’t score, that’s a good thing.

“Ironically, the empty-net goal (in Game 2) was it all weekend for him. He was tremendous defensively. He was so dominating defensively, that’s why he was out there on the six-on-five [at the end of game two].”

When asked who else stands out to him headed into the Saints’ trip to Harvard, Marsh singled out the line of Colin FitzRandolph-Chase Trull-Simon Watson.

“They played really well,” said the coach, “especially FitzRandolph. He’s a senior and a local kid. The guys on the team really love him and have rallied around him. He’s playing the best he ever has here.”

The efforts of Marsh’s crew leads them into this weekend’s return trip to Massachusetts, where they lost last month.

“It’s a little different game going into the big H,” the bench boss said with a laugh. “It’s a tough place to play. We’re excited to be going there. Harvard always plays the game the way it should be played.”

Crimson coach Ted Donato sure hopes so.

“I like the fact that, defensively, we’ve been pretty sound all year,” said Harvard’s rookie coach. “And we’ve received great goaltending all season.

“It concerns me that at times we haven’t been able to score. We’ve scored in bunches this year. We haven’t been consistent in that way. It is tough to deal with, but we’ve dealt with it all season.”

Indeed, while the Saints have posted 114 goals in 36 games thus far (3.17 goals per game), the Crimson have notched just 86 markers in 29 contests (2.97 per game). In addition, Harvard has been held to two goals or fewer on 14 occasions.

In 2003-04, Harvard had five players score in double-digits and four posted at least 30 points. Tom Cavanagh led the way a year ago with 16 goals and 20 assists and Brendan Bernakevitch posted 11 tallies and 19 helpers.

This season, however, Bernakevitch has only four markers and 17 points. Cavanagh, while again the leading scorer, is down to nine goals and 25 points.

“There are a lot of factors,” said Donato about the statistical drop of his offensive difference-maker. “Cavanagh is such a good two-way player that we’ve used him in defensive situations and all around. He’s made that sacrifice for us and we’ve won.”

The Crimson is also without a 30-point man or a double-digit scorer.

“We have kept things moving on our lines,” explained Donato. “Some of that has been dictated by play and some by injuries. We’re fortunate to have good depth and the ability to have some guys play one night and another guy the next night.”

So, if they offense has been so shaky, how has Harvard managed to win 18 games heading into the playoffs?

Donato says that one needs to look no further than the quiet man between the pipes.

“He’s been remarkably consistent and consistently superb,” said the coach about senior netminder and Hobey Baker candidate Dov Grumet-Morris.

“He gives us a chance to win each game and gives us a chance to steal a game when we’re not playing well. He’s very worthy of consideration for All-American and the Hobey. He’s been that good.

“The unfortunate part is that we’ve needed him to be that good to win down the stretch.”

Marsh is fully aware of the challenge that lies before the Saints in trying to get pucks by Grumet-Morris.

“Their goaltender is unbelievable,” said the SLU coach. “You’ve got to root for a kid like that. He’s got to be a Hobey Baker candidate for what he’s done for them and the league … and academically.”

The Crimson netminder leads the nation with a .947 save percentage, is second in the country with a 1.58 GAA and ranks third with five shutouts.

As with all of this weekend’s matchups, each team knows what to expect of the other.

“St. Lawrence is a very dangerous team that’s played well of late,” explained Donato. “They were impressive against Princeton and had a successful final weekend with an overtime game against Cornell and the win over Colgate — two nationally-ranked teams. That’s a bit scary, from a coach’s perspective.

“Offensively, they create a lot of problems. Trevelyan is as good as any player in this league. We’ll have our hands full.”

Marsh knows what to expect as well.

“We’ll need to bring our ‘A’ game,” he said Wednesday night, “We know that. They are solid defensively. It’s not the Harvard you think about with Lane MacDonald and the Fuscos that put up numbers, but they are good defensively. It’s a solid defensive corps.

“We will need to work hard to get second and third chances and they don’t give up many of those.”

Prediction: Harvard in two games.

No. 6 Brown (16-12-3, 9-11-2) at No. 3 Colgate (22-9-3, 14-5-3)

This Season
Colgate swept the season series, winning 3-2 in overtime at home and 3-1 in Providence.

Recent Playoff History
First meeting.

Top Five Scorers
Les Haggett, Sr., F, 29 GP, 11-15-26, 5 PPG
Mike Meech, Sr., F, 29 GP, 13-12-25, 6 PPG
Brian Ihnacak, So., 28 GP, 12-11-23, 4 PPG
Sean Hurley, Fr., D, 31 GP, 3-18-21
Jeff Prough, Fr., F, 30 GP, 9-11-20, 3 PPG, 3 GWG

Tyler Burton, Fr., C, 32 GP, 17-13-30, 7 PPG, 4 GWG
Jon Smyth, Jr., W, 34 GP, 13-16-29, 6 PPG, 5 GWG
Adam Mitchell, Sr., F, 34 GP, 10-16-26, 3 SHG
Darryl McKinnon, Sr., C, 34 GP, 7-13-20, 3 PPG, 3 GWG
Kyle Wilson, Jr., C, 25 GP, 5-14-19, 3 PPG

Between the Pipes
Adam D’Alba, Fr., 25 GP, 14-8-2, 2.16, .927

Steve Silverthorn, Sr., 32 GP, 21-8-3, 1.84, .921

An Inside Look
This series pits two clubs that have never faced each other in the postseason since the ECAC split. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t know what to expect from one another, especially after Colgate’s season sweep.

Brown enters this weekend’s play on the heels of an opening-round sweep of RPI, 7-4 and 4-3 (ot). Last Friday, the Bears scored three times in the final 7:35 to snap a 4-4 tie and win Game 1. Rookie Chris Poli scored his first goals of the season to pace his club.

“I thought we played fairly decently on Friday,” said Brown head coach Roger Grillo. “Maybe it was nerves or whatever, but we got some bounces and some puck luck.”

The next night, Poli struck again. He earned an assist on the Bears’ second tally and then ended the series with the OT winner at the 5:33 mark of the first extra session.

“We played pretty well on Saturday,” said Grillo. “It was one of our better games in a while. We were fortunate to get the goal in overtime and move on. It was good to get the confidence in the playoffs.”

As for Poli, Grillo is pleased with the progress the freshman has made to this point.

“Early on, he struggled a bit,” said the coach. “He’s worked hard and committed himself. He has great size and a good shot. He’s finally put it together at a good time.”

Across the ice, the Bears will face off against head coach Don Vaughan’s squad, winners of 22 games, including 13 at home (13-5-0). Colgate earned last weekend off by virtue of its third-place finish. The Raiders wrapped up the regular season, however, with a disappointing trip to the North Country, where they earned just one point (a 3-3 tie at Clarkson).

“We’re a little disappointed with how things finished up,” said Vaughan. “We learned our lesson from the Clarkson-St. Lawrence weekend on defending our lead.”

They’ve had two weeks to think about it. But for Vaughan, he was happy to get the week off.

“People are usually mixed on the bye week,” he commented. “If you’re playing well and hitting on all cylinders, you don’t want it. For us, it was good. We took a couple of days off then showed up [last Wednesday] with a lot of energy and had three good practices through the weekend.

“Players like Joey Mormina, Darryl McKinnon and Adam Mitchell needed some rest. We used a handful of players a lot and, like a lot of teams, we had the flu bug go through the team.”

But with players on both sides ready to do battle, the teams are anxious to hit the ice Friday night.

“We skated well and executed well [last weekend],” said Grillo, “and a lot of guys are playing well right now. Gerry Burke played well from a defensive standpoint, as did Mike Meech and Chris Poli. They had great weekends. It was good to get scoring from other areas.

“We’ll need to skate and get after the puck against them. We’re a good team if teams have to chase us and a so-so team if we have to chase them.”

Colgate will be looking to dictate play as well and Vaughan will not be surprised if rookie sensation Tyler Burton leads the way, as he has all year.

“He had a lot of energy [in the North Country] when a lot of guys didn’t,” explained the coach. “He comes to the rink with a big smile on his face all the time and has a lot of energy. He makes everyone around him better.

“It starts with his passion. He loves the game. I know everyone says that, but it really is true with him. He’s [also] very quick and deceptively strong … very effective on the wall. But his biggest asset is his ability to anticipate plays.

“That’s not an accident. He’s Johnny-on-the-spot and he plays at such a high level of intensity.”

The Raiders are also getting strong play from players like Mitchell, McKinnon, and junior Jon Smyth, as well as the underrated Mormina. The same can be said for senior netminder Steve Silverthorn, who enters the weekend with the nation’s fifth-best GAA (1.84) and sixth-best shutout total (four).

“Silverthorn continues to play well,” said Vaughan about his steady and consistent netminder.

The coach knows that he’ll need a full effort from his squad this weekend if it expects to knock off a pesky and talented Brown team.

“Obviously, they are playing well,” said Vaughan. “They have to be pleased with the 11 goals they scored last weekend.

“Our challenge will be to find our intensity early in that first game. There’s a little bit of concern about having it. You can scrimmage and run drills, but there’s no substitute for playing games.

“The challenge rests on the older guys. We have to rely on that and that they will prepare the younger guys for what to expect this weekend. They’ve been there before. We had the bye last year too.”

Prediction: Colgate in three games.

No. 5 Dartmouth (19-11-2, 14-8-0) at No. 4 Vermont (19-11-4, 13-6-3)

This Season
Dartmouth won two of three games played against UVM this season. The Big Green won 6-3 (12/30/04 — Ledyard National Bank Classic) and 5-2 (1/15/05). The Catamounts won 5-1 (12/19/04) in Hanover.

Recent Playoff History
2001 Preliminary in Lake Placid: Big Green won 3-2 (ot)

Top Five Scorers

Lee Stempniak, Sr., F, 32 GP, 13-27-40
Mike Ouellette, Jr., F, 32 GP, 14-23-37
Nick Johnson, Fr., F, 32 GP, 16-17-33, 6 PPG, 3 GWG
Eric Przepiorka, Jr., F, 29 GP, 14-16-30, 3 PPG
Garrett Overlock, 32 GP, 9-17-26, 7 PPG, 3 GWG

Scott Mifsud, Sr., F, 34 GP, 20-25-45, 12 PPG, 4 GWG
Jeff Corey, Jr., F, 32 GP, 16-15-31, 3 PPG, 3 GWG
Torrey Mitchell, 33 GP, 11-18-29, 4 GWG
Chris Myers, So., F, 33 GP, 11-8-19, 5 PPG
Kenny Macaulay, So., D, 34 GP, 4-15-19, 3 PPG

Between the Pipes

Dan Yacey, Sr., 24 GP, 13-7-1, 2.08, .918
Sean Samuel, So., 12 GP, 5-4-1, 2.82, .896

Joe Fallon, Fr., 27 GP, 15-7-4, 1.97, .922
Travis Russell, Jr., 8 GP, 4-4-0, 2.21, .905

An Inside Look

It doesn’t get much better than this.

Two teams that fought until the regular season’s last game to see who came away with a first-round bye.

Two teams that battled in their exciting rivalry three times this year.

Two teams that could play three games in one of the better college hockey environments this weekend. All with the knowledge that only one advances to Albany.

Will it be Dartmouth, which turned its season around with a victory over Vermont at the end of 2004? Or will it be the Catamounts, in their final season in the ECACHL, who can point to their turnaround on October 29 in Duluth, Minn.?

“Obviously, we enjoyed a lot more success as a team this year than last,” said UVM head coach Kevin Sneddon, “and that was due to great leadership, improved commitment and consistent work ethic every night.”

The Catamounts were picked by many to finish no better than 10th in the league this year. This writer predicted a ninth-place finish. Instead, UVM spent time in the national Top 15 and grabbed a first-round bye by going 4-0-1 to end the regular season. As a result, they host a playoff series for the first time since 1996-97.

“Our players earned the bye,” said Sneddon, “and a much-needed weekend off. Rest is an advantage at this point in the season, and no matter what some coaches might say, any coach in the league wants it.

“Equally important to the weekend off is the home-ice advantage that follows.”

Oh, yes, that little thing. In fact, this series is so close that it could be that factor that may give UVM an edge. The Catamounts are 11-5-2 at Gutterson Fieldhouse, but one of those losses came at the hands of the Big Green.

The victory came at the end of a stretch midway through the season in which Vermont and Dartmouth played each other three times in less than a month. The Catamounts won the first game, but lost the final two — part of four losses in six games. The Big Green, on the other hand, was off and running. Dartmouth finished the season on a 6-2-0 run that led to a first-round matchup against Yale at home.

On paper, it should have been an easy two-game sweep for Dartmouth. But there’s a reason they play the games. The Elis lost the opener, but won Game 2 in overtime and held a 1-0 lead into the second period of Game 3.

“Yale played great,” said Big Green head coach Bob Gaudet. “They deserved to win Saturday. Their goaltender was outstanding and that’s what you need. We couldn’t keep it out of our net enough and we couldn’t deposit it.

“We really had to work for every inch of ice.”

Down a goal and with momentum building for the Bulldogs on Sunday, Gaudet made the rare decision to call his timeout early in the second period. It worked, as the Big Green responded with five unanswered goals to clinch the series and move onto this weekend’s trip to Burlington.

“We wanted to settle guys down,” explained Gaudet about why he called for a break in the action. “It was the opportune time to give the message that the team was OK. As a coach, you could see little signs of frustration and waning confidence that you suspect.

“We agreed that it was a good time to take 30 seconds. That doesn’t seem like much, but we wanted to let them know what to do. I credit our leadership … Lee Stempniak, Mike Ouellette and the older guys.

“Hockey games are played on the ice, home or away. The pressure of playing at home can be a factor.”

That pressure will fall on the shoulders of the Catamounts beginning Friday evening, as they play their final home games in the ECACHL.

As a result, Vermont will look to Hobey Baker candidate senior Scott Mifsud, junior Jeff Corey (12 points in his last nine games) and rookie Torrey Mitchell to lead the offense. In addition, Sneddon will again turn to freshman netminder Joe Fallon to play his typically solid game in goal. He ranks eighth in the country in GAA (1.97) and is third with five shutouts.

“What I like most [about our team] is our work ethic and our unity,” said Sneddon. “We work incredibly hard and have fun doing it. The guys spend a lot of time together away from the rink, which has made for a great family atmosphere at the rink.

“We need to make sure that we play aggressive this weekend, but stay out of the box. Last time we played Dartmouth, we let the rivalry emotion dictate how we played the game. We need to have controlled emotion at all times.”

According to Gaudet, the Big Green, having battled through a rough start and a scare last weekend, are well-positioned for what awaits them.

“We’ve battled through adversity,” said the coach. “Absolutely, the [Yale series] will help us. It will make us stronger. The team’s been through a lot, but they’re having as much fun now as they did in October when we started. As a coach, I’m happy about that.

“Vermont is a big, skilled team that likes to skate. They have Fallon and Jaime Sifers is excellent on the blueline and as a leader.”

As far as the Catamounts are concerned, it is a mutual love society.

“We have a great deal of respect for Dartmouth,” said Sneddon. “Stempniak, Ouellette and [rookie Nick] Johnson are one of the best lines in college hockey. Yet, if you only focus on them, they have at least two other lines that could sting you from an offensive perspective.

“The addition of Jessiman to the lineup adds another element to the mix that we have not seen this year.”

The Dartmouth power forward, who returned two weeks ago from a serious ankle injury suffered early in the season, is progressing with each shift.

“He was out so long,” remarked Gaudet, “he’s excited to be playing again. He contributes emotionally and in the locker room with his comments.

“He really put it into another gear in practice this week. He’s benefited from the games. We couldn’t replicate the game and the physical play. [But] there’s no pressure for him to score.”

If he started to, however, this could become an offensive juggernaut of a team. Already, the Big Green significantly outshoots opponents on a regular basis and has scored fewer than three goals in a game just twice since early February. Vermont, meanwhile, has not allowed more than three goals in a contest since January 21.

That’s another example of just how even this series is, which means a bounce here and icing there, could lead to winning a series. As Gaudet sees it, though, UVM has the upper hand.

“Naturally, they have the advantage in their building,” he said. “They earned it.”

“We are thrilled to be home in front of the best fans in college hockey,” Sneddon said. “At the same time, we know that Dartmouth has proven they can win on the road. It’s going to be a great series for everyone involved.” 

Prediction: Vermont in three games.

Ivy Accolades

Earlier this month the 2004-05 Ivy League awards were announced. Here’s a look at the honorees.

Player of the Year – David McKee, So., G, Cornell
Rookie of the Year – Nick Johnson, Dartmouth

All-Ivy First Team
Forward: Tom Cavanagh, Sr., Harvard*; Matt Moulson, Jr., Cornell*; Lee Stempniak, Sr., Dartmouth*

Defense: Charlie Cook, Sr., Cornell; Luc Paquin, Sr., Princeton; Noah Welch, Sr., Harvard*

Goaltender: David McKee, So., Cornell

All-Ivy Second Team
Forward: Christian Jensen, Jr., Yale; Mike Ouellette, Jr., Dartmouth; Dustin Sproat, Jr., Princeton

Defense: Ryan Lannon, Sr., Harvard

Goalie: Dov Grumet-Morris, Sr., Harvard

Honorable Mention – Grant Goeckner-Zoeller, So., Princeton; Les Haggett, Sr., Brown; Sean Hurley, Fr., Brown; Grant Lewis, So., Dartmouth; Mike Meech, Sr., Brown; Dan Yacey, Sr., Dartmouth

* – unanimous selection

In Case You Missed It …

• Brown’s seven goals in its Game 1 win over RPI were the most it has scored since a 7-7 tie against Air Force on January 18, 1997.

• Clarkson improved its all-time ECACHL postseason record to 73-53-3 and advanced to the quarterfinals for the 42nd time in the 44 years of the tournament.

• Cornell junior Matt Moulson became the first Big Red player to reach 20 goals in a season since Brad Chartrand notched 24 in 1995-96.

• Dartmouth outshot Yale 158-66 over their three-game series. The Big Green have now posted 40 or more shots on nine occasions this season.

• SLU’s Mike McKenna posted the Saints’ sixth playoff shutout all-time with his blanking of Princeton in Game 1 last Friday.

• St. Lawrence junior T.J. Trevelyan’s 25 goals are the most for a Saints’ player since Burke Murphy’s 33 in 1995-96.

• UVM senior Scott Mifsud’s 20 goals are the most for a Catamount since Eric Perrin’s 26 in 1996-97.

• The five goals Yale scored in Game 2 last Saturday were the highest output for the Elis in a postseason game since a 5-1 win over Princeton on February 27, 1990.

• Bulldogs rookie Will Engasser’s two goals last Saturday — including the OT winner — were the first points of his collegiate career.